Alabama recorded its highest number of new cases of COVID-19 ever on Friday, with the state Department of Public Health reporting 2,980 total cases for the latest 24-hour period.
There were 18 more deaths from the disease and a steady rise in the number of people being treated for the virus in Alabama hospitals.
State and federal health officials have raised alarm over the rapid rise in COVID-19 cases across the nation in recent days, and they have cautioned against another surge as people gather for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.
Nationwide, the number of new cases has grown from 100,000 a day eight days ago to a record 160,000 on Thursday, The New York Times reported.
In raw numbers, Jefferson County was Alabama’s hotspot for spread of the virus, reporting a record 451 cases on Friday. Madison County had 196 cases, with Shelby County adding 157 and Cullman County showing 142.
But ADPH figures showed the greatest concentration of cases per capita over the past two weeks to be in smaller counties in north Alabama.
Cullman County tops the list with a rate of 981 cases per 100,000 population over the last 14 days. In the northwest corner of the state, Colbert County showed 963 cases per 100,000 people during that period, with adjoining Lauderdale County at 817.
On the lower end of the spectrum, Choctaw County, north of Mobile in southwest Alabama, listed only 111 cases per 100,000 population. Other rates included Jefferson, 488; Mobile, 270; and Madison, 368.
The statewide count far exceeded the previous daily record of 2,212 cases on July 9. There have been days when the report showed more cases, but the Health Department said those included old cases from labs that had not previously reported to the state. A spokesman said that was not the case on Friday.
Alabama has now recorded 213,617 total cases, including 180,275 confirmed and 33,342 listed as probable. There have been 3,231 deaths attributed to COVID-19 – 2,989 confirmed and 242 shown as probable.
The moving seven-day average for total new cases has climbed throughout November. The average stood at 1,241 cases a day on Nov. 1, rose to 1,325 last Friday, and reached 1,843 in the latest report.
The number of hospitalizations has risen steadily, from 985 patients on Nov. 7 to 1,233 on Thursday. That was the most since Aug. 18, when there were 1,278 people in Alabama hospitals because of the virus.
The covid census at UAB Hospital also was up on Friday. There were 83 patients being treated for the coronavirus, the most since a count of 81 on Aug. 18. There were 70 covid patients on Friday of last week.
The list of counties, with numbers of total cases, individuals tested and deaths.